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What would you say if I told you there were only two glute exercises you need to do in order together a bigger butt. In this video, I am going to show you the two glute exercises that should make up the bare minimum of your glute workouts. Not only are these two exercises great for building bigger overall glutes, but they are the two exercises that compliment each other’s limitations.

Some might tell you that you only need two exercises total in order to build a muscle group. I disagree. I don’t think anyone should be limited to picking just two exercises for a muscle group because in the case of muscle with multiple heads or bellies, the functions that can be targeted individually through exercise selection are going to factor in.

The chest is a great example of this; it has three heads as well as two separate functions. Some might tell you that all you need is a flat bench press and an incline bench press. You are only hitting two of the three heads of the chest with this selection and while you are pressing, you are not getting any adduction – another major function of the chest.

When it comes to the glutes, their main function is hip extension so to train them properly, you would need to overload them through this function. The problem with exercise selection however, is that their application will only overload the glutes when they are stretch or when they are in their peak contracted position. So when it comes to choosing glute exercises, you need to make sure you cover both avenues.

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But in the case of needing two exercises to build bigger glutes, this is simply what the foundation of your glute training should include. Not every single glute workout needs to include both of these exercises, but a complete training plan will at least build off or include them at some point.

The first of two exercises for glutes that you will want to include in your training is the low bar barbell back squat. Now, it is important that you note that the variation of the squat is low bar and not the commonly performed high bar squat. The reason for this is because the low bar position will actually recruit the glutes much more favorably than would the high bar position. High bar barbell back squats are great for developing the quads – there is no doubt about that. However, the bar being lower on your back will force your glutes to take on a large portion of the load as you perform the squat.

The one limitation of this exercise is that you are not overloading the glutes in their peak contracted position. While they achieve overload on stretch (when you are at the bottom of the squat), you would need something else to cover the glutes in that contracted position.

Make sure you’re not using a squat pad when you are in the low bar position, though. Why? With the bar being lower on your back, you are already forcing your shoulders into external rotation. The further off the back the bar sits (thanks to the pad), the more external rotation and shoulder mobility is required. So ditch the pad for now and save it for the next exercise.

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The second of the two glute exercises you need to be doing for a bigger butt is the barbell hip thrust. Now, the hip thrust is the perfect compliment to the low bar squat simply because it fills in the gaps that were missing prior. When performing the barbell hip thrust, the glutes are overloaded the least in their stretched position (which is covered by the squat). They are however overloaded the most when they are in the peak contracted position, that which was lacking from squat.

One key tip here is to extend your arms straight and push the bar into your legs in order to create the most stability possible throughout the exercise.

Another added benefit of these two glute exercises is that you can overload the glutes with quite a bit of weight. We know that adding weight to the bar is one driver of muscle growth, so these two exercises allow you to tap directly into that. Add in the fact that they compliment each other’s strengths and weaknesses and you have the two glute exercises that you need for a bigger, better butt.

If you are looking for a complete step-by-step training program that will take your workouts to the next level, be sure to head over to athleanx.com and find the workout program that matches your goals.

For more videos on how to get bigger glutes and the best exercises to do just that, make sure you subscribe to this channel here on you YouTube and remember to turn on notifications so that you never miss a new video when it’s published.

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26 thoughts on “The ONLY 2 Glute Exercises You Need for a Big Butt (NO, SERIOUSLY!)”
  1. *THE GIVEAWAY IS BACK* – I’m giving away my brand new complete 90 Day Beaxst PPL program to 40 lucky clickers within the first hour this video is published! Remember, this is NOT THE FIRST 40, but those randomly selected within the first hour the video is published. Click the link to see if you’ve won. No strings attached! Clicking twice does nothing. Only one entry per video. Remember to watch to the end for more workouts.
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    1. The kettlebell swing controlled and if not driven too low would make a great glute expertise from what you taught us at AX

    2. Jeff, who makes that blue tricep rope you use for the hinge pull through? The knots look super comfortable instead of those plastic knobs every other rope uses

    3. @MRCX I can do the hip thrusts. I have the beginning stages of arthritis. I’ve had the xrays and MRIs done already. The doctor said a knee replacement is in my future, but not for over ten years. So I’m stuck with intense pain at times in both knees. Especially when I crouch down. So the squats are brutal with the added weight.

    4. How does the low bar squat compare to a split squat for glute development? My left side is weaker so I stick to a split squat for now.

    5. @MB I see.
      Well, with regards to glutes I would say that luckily, hip thrusts are the better, more important exercise.

      I’m not a professional, mind you. While I did have higher education that included anatomy and biomechanics, I’m not a physiotherapist. So perhaps the best bet would be to talk to one.

      RDLs are a posterior chain exercise you could try. It does have certain limitations, but should be easier on your knees. Reverse lunges are also something you could give a go. While I don’t have a bad knee, I had irritation before, and taking the step back into the lunge rather than forward was considerably more comfortable. Whether this is the case with your level of joint wear (do you know for sure it’s arthritis rather than arthrosis – also known as osteoarthrosis?) is something you’ll have to try.

      Step ups are also gonna be a hit or miss. Starting low is probably gonna be fine for your knees, but there’s also gonna be less stretch on the glutes, of course – so at the very least really pay attention to you contraction. And your knees might not like a higher step.

  2. Jeff you provide the most concise fitness information that I have ever come across! I think that no matter your personal fitness progress, there is education for everyone!
    Thank you ❤

  3. I do single leg RDL’s and let me tell you, they LIGHT UP my glutes big time. I’m super sore today as a matter of fact.
    John Meadows has a video on it. That’s where I learned it from.
    Slight knee bend but no knee movement. 100% hip hinge movement.

    1. @Anthony How much weight can you use? I can RDL 120 kg for reps but I doubt I could single leg 60kg for reps

    2. @Paladin Danse
      It’s not always about weight. It’s about leverage and understanding that. Just like if you work on cars the bigger the lever the more torque you can apply using the same force at the end of that lever.
      Leverage matters!
      People get caught up on pure numbers and forget about the leverage of that weight.
      You can overload muscles more with less weight on some exercises.
      We can’t lose sight of we’re ultimately just trying to overload muscles. We’re not in powerlifting competitions where strictly numbers matter. At least I think most of us are not.

  4. I swear Jeff knows what were thinking. Always comes up with these great videos. The best channel in my opinion.

  5. I wonder how many people you’ve helped with your videos, tens of thousands I’m sure and I’m one of them. Truly a public service!

  6. Bulgarian split squats, hip thrusts and reverse lunges are my 3 big hitters for glutes

  7. The glutes are even better worked with hip thrusts on the second half of the lift. The middle point to the top. If you focus on that range and not bring it all the way to the floor you work the glutes A LOT more. I think it’s also known as KAS hip thrusts.

  8. I used to be a skinny person and had always wanted to change my physique, but my physical strength was not enough to keep up. Since last year, I changed my diet structure. I used to eat very little meat (not a vegetarian, just not very interested in it), so my diet mainly consisted of carbohydrates and vegetables. Then I decided to start buying protein powder and creatine and began strength training. After a year, I gained 20 kilograms of weight and have been stable ever since. Today, my mental state is much better than before, and I feel like I can walk without feeling tired (I rarely went out before because I easily got fatigued). Was it because of my previous diet structure that my body couldn’t support strength training or even normal daily life? I generally supplement with 3 scoops of protein powder and creatine daily. Can I continue this for a long time?

  9. Thanks for another one guys! Putting in my vote for a hamstring version soon!

  10. Heavy lat-packed kettlebell swings and hip thrusts would be my two go-to’s. Speed and strength. Plus, EVERYONE should hip thrust more weight than they squat&pull

  11. Hamstrings next!
    Great video as always, guys. Thank you so much for all the knowledge you share. Y’all have helped me and my wife immensely.

  12. I love the hip thrusts. Thank you for confirming it’s a great exercise to do.

  13. man I love you guys, all of your videos are very well made and really go into why they are the best exercises for certain muscles keep up they great work boyzzzzz

  14. Exercise not only changes your body. It changes your mind, attitude & mood

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